School Teacher Caught Drinking on Camera

December 23rd, 2014 by JBWK

A Federal District Court in Big Stone Gap, Virginia considered whether school officials who captured
a middle-school special education teacher drinking alcoholic beverages on a camera hidden in a
stuffed animal in his school office were excessively intrusive and unreasonable. The Court observed
that the operational realities of a government office may limit or even eliminate a public employee’s
reasonable expectation of privacy in their offices, desks and file cabinets. The Court found that it
would be difficult to believe that a hidden video used to confirm or deny suspicions of alcohol
consumption violated the teacher’s constitutional rights, particularly considering the
responsibilities of a special education teacher. The suit was dismissed. Chadwell v. Brewer,
decided October 1, 2014.

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